Monday, April 28, 2008

HIstory of prime-ministerial graves

The news this weekend that some goons defaced the family mausoleum where Pierre-Elliott Trudeau is buried (they spray-painted "FLQ" and so on) brought a couple of calls from journalists seeking a quick comment. Y'see, among my writings is a little text entitled Grave Sites of Canada's Prime Ministers.

I wrote it years ago on a commission from Parks Canada. Typically of bureaucrats (and I used to be one, so I know how it happens), when they got around to publishing it, they never bothered to send me a copy of my own work. And since I had my cheques, I pretty much forgot about it.

But in fact I now see it's a nice little piece of work, available as a download at You can read who is the only Canadian prime minister not buried in Canada and who was not amused to have Prime Minister Thompson drop dead while lunching with her. I have to admit I still have never visited the grave of any Canadian prime minister... but from the photos it looks like it could be a lovely tour.

And about the vandalism this weekend? Pretty much a non-story, was my opinion. Every society and every tendency includes some idiots; these ones hardly need the attention.

A word to journalists: I try to help, try to be available even. But if you need a quick quote, sending out an email ("please respond right away!") on a Saturday morning does not really exhaust the search possibilities a journalist should be capable of.
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